I was fortunate enough to take a couple of days off work recently. It was sorely needed and gave me a chance to really be alone if you don't count all the dogs and cats in the house. I got to spend some time really taking care of myself and making plans that could change my life. Normally when I am home there is always someone around and I always have something to do. I figure there isn't enough time in the day to do everything I want so I do several things at once. It has gotten so bad that I have taken to watching tv while reading. It really is insane, but I can't help but get caught up in the rush rush of American society. That doesn't work with someone who has a chronic illness. Actually, this mindset isn't good for anybody. So with my body failing, my nerves shot and my energy depleted, I decided I needed a couple of days to really get some rest.
My first morning didn't start the way I wanted because I couldn't sleep in. Normally I feed the cats when I get up and my husband feeds the dogs when he gets up later. I was hoping he would take care of everything and I could just stay in bed, but things don't always work out the way I planned. He decided the cats could wait and he just went about his normal morning routine. This leaves me with some hungry cats that needed food immediately and aren't above resorting to physical means to wake me up. My mood started out all wrong, but I figured it would be fine after my husband left because he couldn't do anything else to mess up my day. I'm sure he doesn't mean to do the things he does, but sometimes I get the feeling he was sent to make things harder for me. I decided to make a smoothie since we had some really good fruit. All I did was throw some pineapple, mango, and blueberries in my blender and added some mango nectar, some almonds and wheat germ. It was really good.
I've made several medication changes over the last month that I think actually are helping me now. I'm eating much better and a lot less. One thing I haven't been doing enough of is exercise because of the pain in my heel. In the last couple of weeks that has been improving and I'm actually having some moments where I'm pain free. My head is clearer and my ears aren't as bad as they were last month. My recent hearing loss hasn't improved, but I didn't expect any changes. Through the course of this illness I have had times where things have improved to the point where I have been considered in remission, but I have never had my hearing return to normal. Meniere's is taking my hearing little by little and won't give it back. I am so fortunate for the good times now that I don't get as upset about my limitations. I figure if things get really bad Max will be my service dog.
During my time off I also had a chance to just be still and be quiet. I made some decisions that I hope my family will support. For years my husband and I have had a plan to move when the youngest child graduates. That is now four years away, but we have been counting down for years. We tossed around several states we wanted to move to, but never really settled on one place. Over the years I keep being drawn to one place over and over again. During my quiet time I actually came to the conclusion that there was a reason I was being drawn to that state and that is where I belong. Very rarely have I had this much peace about a decision so I know this is right. It is so exciting to be on this adventure. I can't wait to see what tomorrow brings.
In the next week or so I will start posting regularly. I plan on covering Meniere's facts and treatments, exercise, eating healthier, and other off topic things that come to mind. I will be working on trying to reach others that live with chronic illness and try to make the most of every day. See you soon...
I have been so busy with work and family this week that I can hardly think. Every afternoon this week I have fallen asleep in the chair which is something I never do. As a result, my balance is way off and my mood is horrible. The best remedy I have found for my crabbiness is a cuddle with one of my kitties. Usually it is Thor because he loves to lay in laps and his purring relaxes me. Just one look in his yellow-green eyes and I forget what's bothering me. Just look at that face. Who can't feel better?
This year I was really worried about July 4. I'm not taking as many meds as I have in past years, so I was afraid I would have an attack of the spins. I knew I couldn't do fireworks with the noise and constant looking up which I knew would trigger vertigo. I wanted to enjoy this long weekend like everyone else, but I can't. What would I do?
I am very fortunate to have some of the best friends in the world. One of them just moved into a house in the country last month and invited the family out to celebrate the 4th and have a bonfire. We had such a great time. Even Tim came after work and he never wants to go anywhere. Debbie is so much fun to be around, and there were so many laughs. I even caught Alexis laughing really hard a few times. The bonfire was nice and we got to roast marshmallows and the girls lit sparklers. And we got to see fireworks in the distance. We saw 3 big show and 2 displays that were put on my neighbors. What was so nice about it for me was that they were far enough away that the sound didn't bother me and I made it through the night without spinning.
I was completely knackered today though. So much work needed to be done, so I tried to balance it out with breaks through the day to help. I still feel like I need a few days off, but I think I will be fine. I seem to be adjusting to this latest drop in hearing, but my attitude needs a lot of work. It still isn't fair, but I wasn't promised a life free of challenges.
Last year at this time my husband, daughters and I spent a week at a cabin in the Hocking Hills. It was such a nice escape from our everyday life. I have been itching to get back for another week to relax. Unfortunately I am unable to take a vacation until sometime in the fall due to work commitments, so I will have to settle for maybe a weekend sometime and the many pictures of our many trips to the hills.
We have a new addition to our family. As you can see he is a ginger and adorable and it was love at first sight. His name is Rooney, and no he wasn't named after Mickey even though my husband likes to joke that it is. He doesn't know funny anyway. He's named after Wayne Rooney since I'm a huge Man U fan. He's fitting right in to our crew with very little problems. Just two of the other cats didn't seem happy at first, but they are now tolerating him. He's a typical crazy ginge, but that's what I like about him. In these pictures, he is cuddling up to a sleeping Nia. Now why am I taking on even more work and stress when I really need less? Just look at that face - how can you not?
I've been feeling antsy lately. I'm not exactly sure why, but it could be one of many reasons. Or it could be several little things. I'm sure turning 40 and taking stock of where I am and where I wanted to be play a part. This seems to be a common thing among my friends of this age, but I wonder if I am more aware because of current circumstances. I've spent the last 10 plus years dealing with a chronic illness that is slowly breaking me down. I've also spent many years experimenting with drugs, and not the recreational kind. That has had as much of an effect on me as the illness.
I have been on so many medication regimens over the years that I've lost count. None have done what the doctors wanted and just made me more miserable. Right now I am down to two medications and I'm trying to work on getting off of those. A month ago I weaned off of two meds that may have been helping slightly, but the side effects weren't worth any benefit. A month on, I'm finally free of the horrible withdrawal symptoms I was suffering. Oh yeah and my doctor said there wouldn't be any. I love her to death, but sometimes she can be wrong. Also I have finally stopped eating like there was no tomorrow. I intellectually understand how medicine is supposed to make me feel better, but if they make me gain an enormous amount of weight, isn't that not good? Well I actually feel better now, but face the long road of trying to get this weight off. Unfortunately I've been through this before with meds and I'm determined not to go through this again.
My mind is finally clear for the first time in years. It is really hard to explain what has been going on. I am starting to feel like I am taking more of an active role in dealing with my illness and exploring more natural treatments. I'm sure it won't be easy and maybe I won't get better, but I'm willing to try even if nothing works. You see I feel like Meniere's has taken over my life for a reason. I may actually be open to finding out the reason instead of trying to pretend to be normal so the people around me don't have to face uncomfortable truths. I tiptoe around not wanting to upset people, but honestly this is what I deal with. I have been blessed though with some incredible friends and family who are there to support me and I can't thank them enough. The way I look at it now is I may not get better, but I'm going to do my best to feel better.
I'm a wife and mom of three living in Ohio. I was diagnosed at the age of thirty with Meniere's Disease. My life is a daily struggle managing a chronic illness with raising teenagers, caring for a growing brood of dogs and cats, a full time job and keeping a home. It's all about balance, which can be hard to achieve when you're spinning wildly.